Wednesday, November 2, 2016

One Toke Over the Line.

I take my final dosage of this seemingly lethal drug cocktail on Friday morning.  On Monday, I'll take a blood test. The results should be in by sometime on Wednesday.  The patient from whom I was exposed will be tested at about the same time. If both of us come back negative, I will then be allowed basic patient contact, though I won't be involved in any procedures that penetrate the skin. I'll be tested again at the three-month and six month exposure points. The patient will be tested in two months and in four months. 

If her three-month test (the one she takes in two months) comes back negative (which it will), all restrictions will be lifted from me, although we'll both have the additional test just because since we've gone this far with it, not following up and then turning out to be HIV-positive and not receiving prompt treatment because of a lack of a simple blood test would be truly stupid.

So I have another four to five days of feeling really sick, probably another week of feeling sub-par, another two months of not performing procedures that penetrate the skin (and only participating in surgeries as an observer, though that's not much of an issue in internal medicine) before being cleared for full duty. I'm still doing the night shift, though I've increased to twelve-hour shifts starting at 9:00 p.m. that don't always last the full twelve hours because of the three-barf-episode policy (or fewer than three if any other gastric distress is present).  I'll have the weekend off beginning Saturday morning, then will start day shifts with my next two weeks being spent in an internal medicine office practice. I'll do some hospital rounds, but the bulk of my time will be spent in the office. 

I was supposed to have flown to my Godson's second birthday party yesterday (the time off was scheduled well in advance; my supervisor suggested that I take the time off anyway, but I didn't feel the need to ruffle any more feathers than had already been ruffled), but it seemed pointless when I felt like I could touch neither him nor his baby sister (also my Godchild). I sent his gift (a 1/8 size violin) with his Godfather, with whom I had planned to share the plane ride. my Godson has shown interest and has wanted to play anytime his father or I played violin for almost the past year. As soon as she is home from her cruise, my mom will give him informal lessons. He'll enroll in a Suzuki method course in January. Following a three-month trial, depending upon how it works,  he'll continue with Suzuki or my mom will teach him.

Our hospital is in a computer crisis mode. Fortunately it's a quiet night. Those who know how are using cell phones to provide Internet links.  I probably shouldn't say that here, but no one knows what hospital of which I'm speaking. The rest of us are using pens and paper (a novel thought) to take notes on patients. These will need to be transcribed, which will result in paid or comped overtime for someone,  but hospitals managed to get by without the Internet for a long time. There are emergency procedures in place for patient equipment that is dependent upon Internet service.

I've made it thus far with only two barf episodes and zero episodes of  of the other gastric distress, so I have almost a 50/50 shot of making it through the full twelve-hour shift. It's a very quiet night in terms of what I can do. I helped a few parents with children's health histories, but there wasn't much else for me to do. I'm here primarily so that no one else can say, "How come Alexis gets so much time off?"  It's not as though any of them would be willing to trade places with me, but I understand the rock and the hard space between which the program director has found herself.

I'm not entirely sure I should be here right now. Between the nausea and the normal effects of the drugs themselves, I'm feeling more wasted than any on-duty hospital employee probably should be. I was offered a prescription for medicinal marijuana but declined it.  I have too many other drugs in my system, in my opinion, to risk it. I'm already at least one toke over the line.

I do not own the rights to this. It will almost inevitably be removed. To the person who does own the rights, please have mercy on a very sick person and leave the video up for just a bit. Thank in advance for you kindness.


  1. Why would it be removed? It's been up for years!

    1. Sometimes someone, presumably the owner of a video, has it removed from my blog. I always acknowledge non-ownership, but someone still wants it taken down.

    2. Weird. I think I've posted it and I don't remember having to take it down.

    3. Someone else always took the videos down for me. I always assumed they contacted blogspot and blogspot administrators did it. So far it's staying up this time.